Monday, April 19, 2010

Guest Post from Keen Inspirations!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hey everyone, PLEASE give your warmest welcome to Sharon from Keen Inspirations. She has been one of my most faithful commenter's from the beginning and I love her for that! I'm so glad she gets to be my first guest poster!!!!!!! And I'm even happier that she chose an outdoor project for my blog. Cuz...when it comes to gardening and/or is a no go for me. I don't know if you know this, but there are bugs in gardens...spiders in particular. And spiders and I DON'T mix! ;)

So without further ado.....take it away Sharon......

Hi! I'm Sharon from Keen Inspirations and I am excited to be Nikki’s guest here today. Her blog is one of the first blogs that I found and quickly became one of my favorites! She has inspired me to see Dollar Store items in a whole new light. I’ve always shopped the Dollar Tree, but bought and used things to use as they were. I never thought to look at them as “how could I use this as a part of something else or give it a makeover to transform it?” Nikki has taught me how to do just that!

So, I am honored that she has entrusted her blog to me today. I’d like to tell you a little bit about myself. I am a SAHM and a MOM (mom of many). I have ten children, three of whom are married and blessed me with 3 grandsons! They are my treasures and a source of joy in my life!

Easter we were all together, minus one son-in-law who’s job had him on the road.

I’ve been a spray painter/re-purposer/thrift store addict for many years out of necessity. :) But blog land has given me a new perspective on creating for fun as well as function. Here a couple of my favorite projects:

After I discovered Rustoleum’s Oil Rubbed Bronze Spray Paint it instantly became my favorite! I used it on my Coffee Corner Makeover. But now I think I have found a new best friend, at least for the summer! It’s Rustoleum’s Multi-color, textured spray paint! Great for out door projects! I used Desert Bisque for my “Faux Stone Planter”.

There are many other colors available check them out here at Rustoleum’s site or go to your local Home Depot! My new love though is Caribbean Sand and I’ve used it on the project that I want to share with you today…My “Faux Stone” Birdbath Planter:

With the warm weather here to stay, I’ve been turning my attention outside to my garden. I love to grow vegetables and flowers and decorate my outside areas. Outside decor is soooo expensive though! Spray paint and thrift stores to the rescue! I started out with the idea of a birdbath. My eleven year old son is an avid bird watcher and I am trying to create a bird and butterfly garden area for him. At the thrift store I found a large pasta bowl and a chunky candle holder.

Then I grabbed my “tools”:

I started out giving everything a coat of Rustoleum’s 2x white primer. Two things that I have learned about painting ceramic and glass is to spray it very,very lightly with primer giving it about two coats and doesn’t have to have the coverage that a final coat does. It just needs to give the paint something to grab on to.

After everything was nice and dry, I went over it with the Caribbean Sand….I love the texture and the color…I’ve run my hands over it more than once!

I’ve also found that with this texture paint that it goes on better and covers better if it has a primer under it no matter what surface you are painting.

Then I put the bowl on the pedestal and had a small birdbath, but it seemed to need something…it seemed empty.

I had an old plastic birdbath with a small pedestal in the middle, so I went for that look. I had on hand a part of a wooden candle holder leftover from another project (never throw anything away…you never know when you might “need it” LOL) and a small china saucer.

I dressed them up in Caribbean sand and put them in the middle of the birdbath.

Better, but the top still seemed like it needed something…I tried a bird but didn’t like it, I knew a fountain was out of the question (that’s another project) and I started thinking a plant, might work…so I called my daughter outside for her opinion and she helped me decide to turn the whole thing into a planter!

I went and found an old clay pot and gave it a quick spray of primer and paint. I put everything together and held it in place with, what else?, Gorilla Glue!

Finally, I made a quick trip to Walmart (the only place open with plants at that time) and grabbed some spring color to fill it up!

My finished product:

As the petunias grow, they will fill the bowl and cascade down over the sides...

In the words of an old computer game that my kids played “ I like it…I like it a lot!”

I apologize for the quality of the pictures...that is something I'm still working on!

So go search your garage, attic, barn and see what you can transform for outside with some texture and glue! If you do a project, I’d love to see it! You can find me at Keen Inspirations or out in my garden! :)

I’ve enjoyed sharing with you today! Thank you Nikki for the opportunity!


  1. Love it, Sharon! You are just SO clever and it's fun seeing you over here at Nikki's (like having coffee together at Starbuck's instead of at know, somewhere different!). :o)

  2. Love it Sharon... you are so very, very clever... I LOVE this... makes me want one in my front yard.... I wonder if I can find something like you have!

    Nikki, Sharon is one of my real in person friends... So glad to see her posting here.

    It's nice to meet you!

  3. What a great project! I'll be checking my stash out tomorrow to see what I can make:)

  4. Hi Sharon, I am Nikki's mom and I am her go to person for saved junk when she is in a pinch! I too believe the old motto "don't throw anything away you may need it someday" I absolutely love your project; I love gardening,I am a Master Gardener, and birds and decorating my lawn! I am going to run right out and make myself a few of these little beauties, thank you for sharing!

  5. I am one of the daughters in the picture !!
    "OOooo Rooooot beer I like it I like it alot !"
    I had forgotten about that game :o) I love this project Mom!! I'm gonna have to find that finish in a warmer color and hopefully whatever I make Ginger won't knock over and destroy ! Love that you got to guest post too !!

  6. Hi Nikki's Mom! Nice to meet you! Thanks for your sweet words about the birdbath. I also love gardening and I'm sorry you had to see my messy raised beds in the back.:( The weather and my kids schedules have not cooperated for me to get them where they need to be. May I ask what a "Master Gardener" is ? Does that mean you have lots of good info to share?;)
    I have some other gardening and out door (will have more soon too) projects on my blog if you have a minute to stop by!
    Your daughter has been one of my inspirations!

  7. What a fabulous idea, and thanks for sharing the tip about priming the underneath first. I've never bothered to do that before, which is probably why the paint flakes off so quickly, ha ha!

  8. Good Morning Sharon,

    Don't worry about your lawn in the pictures, it is the season of transition! A master gardener is someone (we have as many men as women) who goes through training provided in my case by The University of Illinois Extension office at my local college; I know all the bordering states around us have them, and I believe it is a nationwide organization~It cost $125 dollars the year I did it and Nikki, and her lovely sister Tracie, paid for mine as my Christmas present that year! Yes we are thoroughly trained in all area of gardening and tree care, chemical use and bugs and we have access to any number of resources!There are also continuing education classes, usually for free, in canning/preserving, bird/butterfly gardens, water gardens, container gardening, drying flowers, herbs for fragrance and eating! I love it! I would be glad to answer questions, as that is our main purpose: to do volunteer work, and answer the questions! But I still grow weeds better than anything! Nikki's mom

  9. Nikki's Mom,
    That is an awesome gift! I'll have to check out what is available in Georgia. I love gardening but have so much to learn! This year I am trying out "lasagna gardening"...
    Do you have a blog? I'll gladly "follow"!;-)